5 Ways to Reduce Call Hold Time in a Call Center

Understanding how to reduce hold time in a call center to increase agent productivity and customer satisfaction is something we excel at and want to help your business with too. There are so many benefits to working to assist customers as soon as possible—customer experience being at the top of the list!

In this blog post, we go over the top 5 ways to reduce call hold time for your call center.

Decrease hold times with Live Chat, Texting, and Email

In a previous blog post, we talked about how adding live chat into your conversational marketing strategy is beneficial to your business and improving customer relations. When you’re able to provide chat options during a checkout, your conversion rate only increases because your customer is assisted while they’re cart is open rather than being required to abandon it to get help.

Texting and email are also great ways to minimize wait times to get in touch with an agent. Over 6 out of 10 consumers in the US would rather a digital self-service tool, like website or messaging platforms to avoid being placed on hold. These alternatives allow agents to help multiple people at once rather than one call at a time.

 

Reduce Average Handle Time (AHT)

One of the most common ways to reduce call center hold time is to reduce average handle time. Average handle time (AHT) is a common contact center key performance indicator (KPI) that assesses efficiency and productivity without compromising customer satisfaction.

The key is to answer the customer’s question or solve their problem in as little time as possible (without making them feel rushed), so they can get back to what they were doing, and you can help another person.

There are a variety of ways that a contact center can decrease average handling time. Start the call by keeping the greeting short and sweet—introduce yourself and ask how you can help. Provide your agents with an internal knowledge base so they can quickly find an answer without needing to put the customer on hold. Recording and analyzing calls is a great way to learn how your agents communicate and determine areas of improvement to help them shorten call time.

 

Minimize Note-Taking Post-Call

Reducing the amount of time an agent spends completing notes post-call will free them up faster to assist the next person in the queue. After-call work can me minimized in a couple of ways starting with taking notes while in the call rather than waiting to complete everything after hanging up.

Taking detailed notes during the call will provide the most accurate information because your agents won’t need to spend time trying to remember specific call details. They can also shorten their reporting time by using abbreviations for commonly used words.

 

Provide Employees with Adequate Training

At Incept, we pride ourselves on giving our employees appropriate training to be able to handle calls and a wide variety of situations on their own in a timely manner. We’ve also seen an improvement in agents’ performance when we provide coaching based on reviewing their recent calls.

When you provide your call center employees resources to help them improve and grow, it’ll result in more skilled agents which then ultimately leads to reduced hold times.

 

Monitor Employee’s Call and Post-Call Activity

Supervisors should regularly monitor the call queue for a couple reasons. First, you always want to be aware of how long customers are on hold and get an agent helping them as soon as possible.

Second, if you notice an agent whose call status is either on a call or post-call for a lengthy period, following up with them to assist them if they are experiencing problems will help them complete the call and answer a new incoming call.

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Download our guide to help you reduce call hold times!

 

Hold times can greatly impact client experience which can result in negative impacts such as dissatisfied customers, or even returns or cancellations.

Using our expertise in inbound telemarketing, we’ve created a guide to help you improve customer experience by decreasing call hold times.

In this guide you’ll get information on:

  • Other services to offer that we’ve found to best support your phone campaigns

  • Steps to take to ensure your agents are the most productive and assist customers in a timely manner

11 Customer Service Quotes To Inspire Your Team

11 Customer Service Quotes To Inspire Your Team

Customer service is the act of supporting your customers in a way that ensures their satisfaction with your product or service. While this is traditionally done over the phone, customers are seeking service though many other channels too, including email, web, text message, and social media .

At Incept, we believe that every customer interaction is an opportunity to grow or weaken a relationship and customer expectations are higher than ever. To keep the importance of this top of mind and to inspire our team to be the best possible version of themselves, we put together a list of a favorite customer service quotes to inspire both your team and yours!

Contact Center Trends for 2019 That We Are Most Excited About

Contact Center Trends for 2019 That We Are Most Excited About

The landscape of communication is rapidly evolving so we strive to keep tabs on latest contact center trends so that we can provide our clients (and their customers) with the best service. Being in a mindset of growth and advancement always proves to be effective in helping our clients achieve their customer service goals as well as improving our own business.

Whether the current call center trends include tactics that we already employ or methods that we see on our horizon, here’s what our team is most excited about in 2019:

3 Strategies To Increase Retention of Subscription Box Customers

3 Strategies To Increase Retention of Subscription Box Customers

Customer churn is the single most important factor in predicting a subscription box service’s future success, according to David Packman, a well-known industry investor. But alarmingly, McKinsey & Company found that more than one-third of subscription box consumers cancel within three months. S what can be done to increase the retention of subscription box customers?

Well-designed customer retention programs can help to reduce customer churn as well as identify critical service issues that may be creating customer dissatisfaction. In our experience, it's best to customize your subscription customer retention strategies to one of the following two approaches:

Retaining Exceptional Employees: 4 Ways to Reward Contact Center Employees

Retaining Exceptional Employees: 4 Ways to Reward Contact Center Employees

Contact centers have one of the highest turnover rates of any industry, with an average organization needing to replace 1/4 of their front-line staff each year. Continuously replacing team members takes a toll on any organizations, both financially and culturally. And while many believe that simply increasing the hourly wage is the answer to this problem, it’s been proven that the most successful employee retention strategies revolve around recognition, rewards, and overall company culture.

3 Reasons to Add Live Chat to Your Conversational Marketing Strategy

3 Reasons to Add Live Chat to Your Conversational Marketing Strategy

In today’s social media and texting culture, the connection between customer and business is changing. The way people want to discuss their problems, and how fast they want them solved, also plays a role in the channel they use to contact support.

And based on the stats of only 6% of millennials wanting to call a company for customer service, we know it’s time to evolve. Therefore, we want to discuss several reasons to add live chat to your conversational marketing strategy to help you find methods to grow your business.

Strategic Planning for Telemarketing Companies

Strategic Planning for Telemarketing Companies

Incept’s CEO, Sam Falletta, was recently featured on The Market That Moves America podcast where he talked about Incept’s path from rapid expansion to focused growth. With nearly two out of five middle market businesses lacking a clearly defined strategy to guide business decisions, this podcast is worth a listen for any business interested in learning from one company’s journey towards strategic growth.

Incept: From Rapid Expansion to Focused Growth

Incept: From Rapid Expansion to Focused Growth

Incept was recently spotlighted by The National Center For The Middle Market in their Strategic Planning for Growth research analysis. Through their research, the NCMM uncovered three critical components of strategy—definition, development process, and execution—that work together to enable companies to achieve their growth goals. Below is a short video summarizing the key findings of the analysis followed by an excerpt from the report: Incept’s journey from rapid expansion to focused growth.

Case Study: Providing Exceptional Telemarketing Service To The Subscription Industry

Case Study: Providing Exceptional Telemarketing Service To The Subscription Industry

One of our closest and longest-standing partnerships is with a leading provider of Internet-based postage subscription service. This subscription enables small businesses, enterprises and online retailers to print U.S. Postal Service-approved postage with just a computer, printer and Internet connection, right from their home or office. They count on us to deliver a seamless customer experience, through new customer welcome calls, customer service, technical support, retention, and lapsed customer reactivation.

A B2B Telemarketing Company That Puts Relationships With Your Customers First

A B2B Telemarketing Company That Puts Relationships With Your Customers First

Incept is a contact center partner that supports co-sourced customer service conversations for some of the country’s most recognizable brands, including Microsoft, Serta, AARP and the American Red Cross. Some of these conversations have helped companies save millions of dollars through the retention and acquisition of customers, while others have literally saved lives. More than 20 million conversations on behalf of our clients have led to industry-leading results, but it’s our attention to individual conversations and the lasting relationships they form between our clients and their customers that has etched out our competitive advantage in the marketplace.

Incept believes that the most important part of our lives are the deep relationships we build with other people, and that the building blocks of great relationships are the individual conversations we have each day.  Incept exists to help our clients conduct meaningful conversations, and therefore develop deep relationships with the people most important to them every day. 

#RelationshipsMatter | Employee Spotlight: Billie Johnson

#RelationshipsMatter | Employee Spotlight: Billie Johnson

Incept is a place where relationships matter. We're a creative, diverse, and engaging community uniting more than 200 team members with Fortune 500 companies, blood centers, and B2B sales teams across the United States and we want to share some of the stories from the people that make this team great every day.

Today we bring you Billie Johnson, Incept's Vice President of Client Results.

2018 Will Be The Year of 2-Way Text In Customer Engagement

2018 Will Be The Year of 2-Way Text In Customer Engagement

The customer engagement and telemarketing industries have experienced a lot of change over the last 12 months. The political atmosphere of the FTC, call blocking and spam alerts from the most widely used carriers, and the demand for omni-channel care from customers - it's been a turbulent year with many highs and lows for us all. But we made it.

It's time now to look forward to a new year and what better way to kick off 2018 than to make a few predictions about what the year will have in store for us.  We got our Incept Results team together to talk about our thoughts for the year to come and realized that there was one overwhelming theme to our predictions:

Incept Gives Purpose: A Closer Look At Incept Gives

Incept Gives Purpose: A Closer Look At Incept Gives

The mission of Incept Gives Purpose is to contribute to the innovation and new job growth in our community by helping individuals become the best possible version of themselves. Entrepreneurs help build communities in ways such as providing jobs, conducting business locally, creating and participating in entrepreneurial networks, investing in community projects, and giving to local charities.